Volume 4, Issue 1
  • ISSN 2210-4372
  • E-ISSN: 2210-4380
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What is a genre? What distinguishes a genre like science fiction from other genres? We convert texts to data and answer these questions by demonstrating a new method of quantitative literary analysis. We state and test directional hypotheses about contents of texts across the science fiction, mystery, and fantasy genres using psychometrically validated word categories from the Linguistic Inquiry and Word Count. We also recruit the work of traditional genre theorists in order to test humanists’ interpretations of genre. Since Darko Suvin’s theory is among the few testable definitions of science fiction given by literary scholars, we operationalize and test it. Our project works toward developing a model of science fiction, and introduces a new method for the interdisciplinary study of literature in which interpretations of literary scholars can be put to the test.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
Keyword(s): corpus linguistics; fantasy; genre; mystery; science fiction
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